[Amps] Building an Amp 101

Roger (K8RI) k8ri at rogerhalstead.com
Fri Jan 17 18:47:33 EST 2014

On 1/17/2014 5:10 PM, Colin Lamb wrote:
> One area where home built amplifiers can be substantially better than commercial ones is ease of repair.  Many commercial amps are designed to be compact.  Even Collins and Alpha can be bears to repair.  A good home built design will allow easy access to all the components.  Roger mentioned that the flat panels and angle aluminum constructed cabinets may not look as pretty as the commercial amps, but with blind nuts the maintenance might be significantly better than commercial.

By all means, if you can get them, use those blind nuts and use a 
standard size like a philister(sp?) Phillips head. It's unlikely you'll 
ever strip them out and if you use at leas #8 or #10 it's unlikely the 
heads will get buggered up from the screwdriver. You can color them with 
a black felt tip marker and they'll look as good as the ones on 
commercial amps.

> If your home built amp is better in some way than a commercial amp, you can hold your head high.

That it works and you built it is enough to hold your head up high.  <:-)

You should have seen my first amp which was a 6C21 with swamped grid 
input. I was proud of that thing even if it did take out the entire 40 
meter band, city wide.   The resistors were those old, large, carbon 
resistors about a half inch in diameter and 3 or 4 inches long.  The 
connections looked like 2 or 3 turns of solid wire wrapped around each 
end and they looked like they'd been painted with a paint brush using 
old paint.  I haven't seen any of those in years.  It wasn' long before 
I replaced it with a pair of 813s in GG.  I don't remember how I handled 
the screens and grids as that was over 50 years ago.  BTW Good 813s and 
6C21s were $5 and plentiful.


Roger (K8RI)

> I build a lot of gear and mostly use components that I have acquired.  I try to use the components I have to come up with pleasing looking equipment.  For that, I find that knob and meter selection is important along with panel layout as well as labeling.  I am just ready to try engraving a panel with my CNC mill.
> 73,  Colin  K7FM
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